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‘The Vampire Diaries’ Review: A June Wedding (and Explosion)

Bob Mahoney/The CW

Stefan and Caroline got married!

And it was everything shipper dreams are made of…combined with a few insane moments that reminded us we’re still watching The Vampire Diaries.

Weddings in Mystic Falls can’t go off without a hitch.

But they can be beautiful and special, and everything Caroline’s dreamed of since she was a little girl. Or since the moment in the pilot when she spotted Stefan in the hallway and declared, “We’re Planning a June Wedding.”

One of the many things I loved about this episode were the various nods to the show’s history. Ric’s monologue about turning enemies into family, Damon and Caroline bonding over Liz, Stefan and Caroline remembering the dance they shared at prom, and Caroline’s prediction that he would fall madly in love coming true.

It’s callbacks like this make my heart hurt in that bittersweet way. The moments are amazing and touching. I love being reminded of them. But it’s a little like hearing Hamilton’s “One Last Time” playing quietly in the background. This is it. After tonight, there’s only one final hour of TVD left forever.

I’m not ready to say goodbye.

Bob Mahoney/The CW

So let’s focus on the rest of the episode for now: the hastily thrown together wedding was a plot to bring Katherine out into the open. Damon assumed she’d never be able to resist ruining Stefan’s happiness. The boys at the Armory came through with a potential way to kill the latest devil: combining Katherine’s bones into a knife.

We all knew it wouldn’t be that easy. This is Katherine Pierce we’re talking about. She didn’t survive 500 years running from Klaus to fall into a trap. Instead, she sent her proxy as a distraction.

Kelly Donovan, appearing for the first time since season one, strolled back into town on Peter’s arm. They told Matt a story about how they reconnected. Second chances. I assumed Kelly was lying even before she started spitting up blood in the bathroom.

Now, I’m no fan of Matt’s, but it’s not realistic that he didn’t know his mother died. Kelly said she fell two years earlier. Did she fall off a cliff? Or die with no identification? I will believe in witches and vampires, but death involves paperwork, and next of kin. Someone should have alerted Matt.

Anyway, Peter somehow survived Kelly slashing his throat until Matt found him. He relayed the information, but Kelly was already stealing the spotlight at the wedding. She had nasty words for the bridge, groom, Damon, and Matt. But her real purpose was to blow up the house to cause a distraction.

More on that in a moment. First, as beautiful and romantic and perfect as the #SterolineJuneWedding was, it was a rough day for Bonnie. She originally opted out of the wedding because Stefan killed the love of her life. Fair enough. Except ghost Enzo again tried to get her to forgive Stefan. He told her that pain wasn’t the only thing holding them together. He also reminded her how much Caroline means to her, and why she should be there for her.

They’re so romantic, and it’s so painful. Because why haven’t they brought him back to life yet? We can’t have a finale without Enzo finding a way to be alive. Damon’s alive. Kai’s alive. Kelly and Vicki (more on her soon) are alive. There has to be a way to rescue Enzo from his current plane of existence.

Annette Brown/The CW

Of course, we may have an even bigger problem for Bonnie. Along with the twins (who Stefan convinced Ric to let come to the wedding with an assist from Valerie), Bonnie was trapped in the building when it went up in flames. But the twins were syphoning her magic, and keeping the flames from touching her. Ghost Enzo arrived, begged Bonnie to fight, and promised her they’d be together again.

Bonnie did as he asked. The twins were safe. But once Vicki started to ring the bell, Bonnie collapsed, as Stefan tried to revive her. Did she die? Is that how Elena’s going to be awake next week? I refuse to believe that Bonnie Bennett is dead for good. Maybe a brief death will be enough to wake Elena. Loophole.

As for Vicki, why is she siding with Katherine? Yes, I imagine hell is awful. Kelly said she’d do anything to escape the torture. But does that mean destroying the town where her brother lives? Vicki’s always been so protective of Matt. I hope there’s a deeper motivation at work. Also, clever play, show. We all assumed we’d be getting at least a glimpse of Ms. Pierce this week. Instead, it was Vicki in the shadows.

Now, before we go, we have to talk about the Salvatore brothers. I loved Damon’s pep talk when Stefan began to doubt himself (again). It’s not as easy as the ripper being dead and gone. Stefan’s always going to have to live with his actions. But Damon’s right. Stefan needs to live his life, not just for himself, but for Caroline. She deserves the best man he can be.

And Stefan wants the same happiness for his brother. He wants Damon and Elena to have the human future they imagined. But, the cure is running through Stefan’s veins. That means that it’s unlikely Stefan will be around for that future because he’ll have to pass the cure to Damon. In that moment, as Damon teased him about losing his hero hair, Stefan knew that. He understood the weight of the situation, and what would have to be done.

Next week’s finale is going to hurt. Bring the tissues.

About the author

Mandy Treccia

Mandy Treccia has served as TVSource Magazine’s Executive Editor since 2016, formerly as Editorial Director from 2012-2016. She is an avid TV watcher and card carrying fan girl prone to sudden bursts of emotion, ranging from extreme excitement to blind rage during her favorite shows and has on more than once occasion considered having a paper bag on hand to get her through some tough TV moments. Her taste in TV tends to rival that of a thirteen-year-old girl, but she’s okay with that. Follow her on Twitter at @SourceMandy.